Popular western Sydney based promotion, Gladiators Cage Fighting Australia, returned to the St Marys Band Club on Saturday night, and once again, the promotion attracted a full house.
Featuring a ten-fight lineup, Gladiators Cage Fighting 6 was headlined by an explosive 82 kg clash between Mikey Vaotuua from the Te Huna Fight Gym and Australian Top Team’s Saeed Fatahifar. Fatahifar, a late replacement for the showcase bout, silenced the Vaotuua friendly crowd by scoring a second round submission.
James Te Huna was in attendance to support the Te Huna Gym fighters doing battle on the night, and Vaotuua was walked to the cage by the UFC middleweight. It was the taller Fatahifar who opened proceedings in the main event, uncorking a thumping kick to the thigh of Vaotuua. Vaotuua returned fire with a leg kick of his own, he backed it up with a left hand which grazed Fatahifar. Both men continued to throw leg kicks before the match hit the canvas, briefly. Fatahifar moved forward as they stood back up, tying Vaotuua up against the cage before tripping him and gaining side control on the ground. From there he moved smoothly to mount. Fighting off his back, Vaotuua did well to keep Fatahifar from posturing up by holding his head down, but Fatahifar eventually broke free and connected with four or five right hands right as the round came to an end.
The second round saw Vaotuua get off the mark first, landing a right hand on Fatahifar. He pushed forward throwing punch combinations, however he was forced backwards with Fatahifar’s counter punching. Fatahifar muscled Vaotuua up against the cage, where he looked to land knees to his head. That sparked Vaotuua to go on the offensive with a takedown, but he was unsuccessful. Fatahifar changed levels and searched for a takedown of his own, he got it, dumping Vaotuua hard on the canvas. It wasn’t long before the referee jumped in and called a stop to the fight, with Fatahifar getting the tap by smothering the face of Vaotuua with his shoulder from top position.
Result: Saeed Fatahifar def Mikey Vaotuua via Submission, Rd 2, 2:12
In the co-main event, entertaining Te Huna Fight Gym prospect, Terence Tipene, and Mirko Nuotatore from Legends MMA met in a short-lived, fast-paced clash, which ended with Tipene dropping Nuotatore with a flying knee before sealing the deal with a handful of punches on the ground.
Result: Terence Tipene def Mirko Nuotatore via TKO (Knee and Punches), Rd 1, 0:44
Hani Telefoni, another fighter under the Te Huna Gym banner, came up against Sydney West MMA’s Aiden Meaney in what was a technical battle at 79 kg. After three rounds of closely contested action, it was Meaney who walked away the judges decision.
The fight began with both men landing leg kicks. Meaney got on the front foot and worked for a takedown, Telefoni, however, defended well and proceeded to back Meaney up with punch combinations. After a brief period where Telefoni worked for a takedown, Meaney fired back with a head kick which just grazed Telefoni. Telefoni was determined to get it to the canvas, but once again was unsuccessful with the takedown. A superman punch from Meaney was blocked by Telefoni, who closed out the opening round of action with a one-two punch combo.
The second frame saw Meaney open up with a spinning kick to the body of Telefoni, it came at a price though, as Telefoni countered nicely with his boxing. Not deterred by the outcome, Meaney again unleashed a spinning kick. He used the momentum and drove in for a single leg as Telefoni grabbed his neck for a guillotine. Meaney was able to secure the takedown and move to side control. Fighting off his back, Telefoni did well to prevent Meaney from transitioning to mount by keeping a high knee. Telefoni exploded back to his feet but he was forced to deal with a tight looking guillotine choke from Meaney. The second round ended with Telefoni coming forward swinging.
It wasn’t an easy task to separate the pair going into the final frame. Meaney opened up with a solid outside leg kick, which he followed up with a right hand. Both fighters exchanged leg kicks at that point before Telefoni landed a clean left hook. Meaney shot in for a double-leg, but Telefoni shrugged it off easily. Telefoni again landed with more shots and once again Meaney is forced to try get the fight to the floor. He was unsuccessful, but did land a body kick as they separated. With 10 seconds remaining in the fight, Meaney rushed forward and secured a body lock, which he used to trip Telefoni to the canvas.
Result: Aiden Meaney def Hani Telefoni via Decision (Unanimous)
A fast-paced 75 kg matchup between Joey Tafili (Te Huna Fight Gym) and Damien Tyrrell (Lions Den) looked like it was going either way with both fighters going toe-to-toe and both having success on the feet. Tafili, however, landed a clean punch to the head of Tyrrell at the end of the opening period and snatched the win with punches on the ground.
Result: Joey Tafili def Damien Tyrrell via TKO (Punches), Rd 1, 2:57
A ground shaking, 120 kg collision between massive crowd favorite, Dion ‘Big Sexy’ Mooney, and Joshua Leota ended with Mooney pounding out a resilient Leota with four or five monster punches from mount. The end came at 2:11 of the opening frame. Considerably out-sized in the match, Leota, however, showed no signs of backing down and did land with a handful of solid leg kicks throughout.
Result: Dion Mooney def Joshua Leota via TKO (Ground and Pound), Rd 1, 2:11
ATT’s Helio Pinto utilised his wrestling to nullify the striking of Lions Den product Rhys Savage in a 90 kg encounter. Savage, however, proved too good on the feet and did enough there to scored a unanimous decision over Pinto, who was left bloodied up at the final siren.
Result: Rhys Savage def Helio Pinto via Decision (Unanimous)
In what could have been fight of the night, Te Huna trained Matthew Lupi, who possible received the loudest reception of all the fighters on the card, kept his supporters happy with a TKO win over Justin Grove from Oceania Top Team. The entertaining tussle was contested at 84 kg.
The fight began with both men throwing punch combinations from the opening bell. Lupi looked to get the better of the exchange before Grove connected with a left hook which sent Lupi to the canvas. After a brief struggle there, Lupi regained his feet and scored a takedown. He moved to side control and unleashed a bunch of short shots to the head of Grove. Grove exploded and got back to his feet, however Lupi forced him back into the cage and landed a shot which dropped him. Grove recovered well, regained his footing, and the round came to a close in a barrage of punches from both fighters.
Lupi went on the front foot to start the second round, headhunting Grove with single punches. A solid left found its mark and Grove looked to be in some trouble. Grove never backed down and continued to throw punch combinations. However Lupi poured it on and the referee stepped in waved the action off.
Result: Matthew Lupi def Justin Grove via TKO, Rd 2, 0:26
Another standout encounter on the night was a 90 kg contest between Stevie Tipene-Vaeila from the Te Huna Fight Gym and Hunter Muay Thai’s Matt Gray. In the end, the crowd friendly three rounder was ruled a unanimous decision to ‘T-V’.
A grazing left hook from Gray started the fight off before T-V took the fight to the canvas. They were soon back standing and a chest battle ensued on the fence. Gray grabbed a guillotine choke but T-V was able to get it back to the floor. The opening round played out with T-V landing short shots from top position.
Gray opened the second frame with a pair of kicks. T-V rushed forward and pressed him up against the cage. Gray reversed position and landed short knees to the thigh of T-V. T-V spun around and scored a takedown before unloading a number of short punches. Gray adopted a high guard from the bottom and locked up a tight looking triangle choke there. T-V postured up and after a period broke free, Gray, however, kept hold of an arm looking for an arm-bar. T-V lifted him up before dumping him on his head and the round closed out with T-V in side control.
Once again Gray went on the offensive at the start of the final round, throwing punch combinations. T-V avoided the majority of the attack, however he did eat a clean uppercut. Gray followed the strike up with a takedown. He postured up and connected with a number of hard punches from the top. T-V looked to be in trouble but he scrambled nicely and regained his feet. Not for long however, as Gray once again took it to the canvas, where he proceeded to punish the ribs of T-V until the clash ended.
Result: Stevie Tipene-Vaeila def Matt Gray via Decision (Unanimous)
The second bout of the night saw Te Huna fight Gym’s Saipele Esera take on Sinosic / Perosh trained Bryce Spiteri. Spiteri was determined to make it a battle on the canvas, however the striking of Esera in the end proved to be the overriding factor in the 84 kg fight.
The two fighters exchanged leg kicks in the feeling out period before Spiteri dived in and took Esera to the ground with a single-leg. Looking to get back to his feet, Esera rolled, however Spiteri wasted no time locking up a rear-naked choke. Esera worked out of the choke and took top position. The fight returned standing and Spiteri came forward and tied Esera up on the cage. After a short period of time, Spiteri dropped down and scored a double-leg takedown right before the bell sounded.
Esera went on the offensive to start the second chapter, punishing Spiteri with solid punches. A big right hand from Esera landed, forcing Spiteri to drive in and take him down with a double-leg. Esera, however, cage walked back to his feet in a good show of strength. Both fighters took a short breather before Esera let it all go, landing several clean punches to the head of Esera and the referee had no choice but to wave it off.
Result: Saipele Esera def Bryce Spiteri via TKO (Punches), Rd 2, 2:52
In the curtain raiser fight, Tony Palemia and Mono Uepi collided at 100 kg. After shrugging off an early combination from Uepi, Palemia, the obvious crowd favorite between the two men, finished the contest with strikes at just 53 seconds into the fight.
Result: Tony Palemia def Mono Uepi via TKO (Punches), Rd 1, 0:53
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